Recommended reading

Whether you’re a seasoned expert or are just starting to learn about Lean Management, I think these books should be required reading for all Lean managers. These recommendations range from the classics that were foundational in the evolution of Lean manufacturing to contemporary Lean thinkers, from practical guides and workbooks on Lean methods to primers on Lean management principles and even a thriller-style novel.

Click the book you like and it will send you directly to a shop where you can buy it.

The Toyota Way: 14 Management Principles from the World’s Greatest Manufacturer by Jeffrey K. Liker

The Toyota Way was the first piece of Lean literature to clearly articulate the source of Toyota’s success to the masses. Rather than instructing readers on the technical aspects of the Toyota Production System (TPS), Dr. Liker focuses on the 14 key business philosophies and management principles that define the Toyota style of management, without which organizations who aim to copy TPS techniques will undoubtedly fail to generate results.

The Toyota Way Fieldbooka companion to The Toyota Way 

The Toyota Way Fieldbook builds on the philosophical aspects of Toyota’s operating systems by detailing the concepts and providing practical examples for application that leaders need to bring Toyota’s success-proven practices to life in any organization. The Toyota Way Fieldbook will help other companies learn from Toyota and develop systems that fit their unique cultures.

The Toyota Production System: Beyond Large-Scale Production By Taiichi Ohno

Written by the TPS’s primary contributor, this book provides insight into history and evolution of TPS from the point of view of one of its founders. From the social and economic forces that drove the creation of the TPS to its historical rise, this book allows readers to get inside Ohno’s mind, offering present-day Lean thinkers valuable lessons on the philosophy behind the system.

The Machine that Changed the World By James P. Womack and Daniel T. Jones

The first book to coin the term ‘Lean’. The Machine that Changed the World is a thorough account of the triumphs of the TPS over the prevailing mass-production system of the time. Authors Womack and Jones were the first to articulate the principles of Lean, exhaustively documenting its advantages and the reasons behind Toyota’s success. This book is an essential guide for leaders seeking a successful Lean transformation for their organizations.

Lean Thinking: Banish Waste and Create Wealth in Your Corporation by Daniel Jones and James Womack

Lean Thinking is a practical follow-up that explains the ‘how to’ of Lean manufacturing. Jones and Womack teach the defining principles that should govern any Lean implementation, from defining your business’s value and clarifying the value stream to striving toward perfection by eliminating muda (waste).

Learning to See: Value-Stream Mapping to Create Value and Eliminate Muda by Mike Rather and John Shook

In this workbook the authors introduce the tool of value stream mapping-the blueprint for Lean transformation-through an easy-to-read, step-by-step instruction manual. The value-stream map represents the flow of material and information that provides managers and executives a picture of the entire production process. Learning to See engages and educates readers of all backgrounds through maps, diagrams and illustrations, and practical case studies.

2 Second Lean by Paul A. Akers

Paul Akers wants you to know that you can improve your workplace, company culture, or life by making 2-second improvements. In 2 Second Lean, Akers outlines his path to transforming the culture of his company, FastCap, from the humble beginning of his Lean journey to a success story about training people in a culture of continuous improvement. Akers breaks down his concepts into easily digestible lessons to help readers apply Akers’ learnings to their own organizations.

The Lean Six Sigma Pocket Toolbook By Michael L. Jones and John Maxey

This compact-yet-comprehensive book is a must-have reference for Lean and Six Sigma tools and concepts. The LSS Pocket Toolbook features summaries and examples of the 70 most important tools in LSS, grouped by purpose and usage-including expert advice on how to determine which tool is best for different purposes.

The GoalA Process of Ongoing Improvement by Eliyahu M. Goldratt & Jeff Cox

A must-read for anyone studying production systems, The Goal elucidates the importance of defining goals that set organizations on a path to continuous improvement. The Goal follows the story of a plant manager who has 90 days to save his plant from closing-and must break out of his conventional ways of thinking in order to succeed.



Additional reading for inspiration and personal growth

As important as growing as a Lean practitioner, by reading books about Lean, is your personal inspiration and growth. So I gathered e-books on these topics that are related to you Lean growth. They vary from Lean principles you can use in your everyday life to more teambuilding related books.

I hope you find some to your liking. Enjoy !